Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC.), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said he will call Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) to testify in the Senate if the House impeaches President Donald Trump.
Graham, during an interview with Fox News’s Sean Hannity on Wednesday evening, Nov. 13, after the close of the first day of public hearings in the House Intelligence Committee, stated that he would not accept a trial in the Senate based on hearsay evidence and without testimony from the so-called whistleblower who is at the center of the impeachment inquiry.
“Any resolution setting up a trial in the Senate—I’m going to make sure that hearsay cannot be the basis of an impeachment investigation,” he said. “If you excluded hearsay, like every other court in the land, there’s nothing there,” he added. “If you invoked the hearsay rule, what would be left?”
Graham added that a Senate trial needed to “expose the whistleblower,” so that President Trump could “confront his accuser.”
“I will not accept a trial in the Senate until I know who the whistleblower is,” he said.
In the July 25 phone call, President Trump asked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to “look into” former vice president and current 2020 presidential candidate Joe Biden’s role in ousting a prosecutor investigating a Ukrainian gas firm where his son Hunter held a lucrative position on the board. This prompted a whistleblower complaint and, in turn, the impeachment inquiry in the House.
Though GOP leaders have requested to have the whistleblower publicly testify as part of the impeachment inquiry, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) has dismissed the whistleblower’s testimony as unnecessary.
Graham, during the Fox News interview, questioned the whistleblower’s potential motivations and his/her connection with Joe Biden.
“Was the whistleblower connected to Joe Biden in any way?” he said. “Here’s the point: Did the whistleblower engage in an effort to get the Ukrainian president [at the time, Petro] Poroshenko, to weigh in and stop the investigation of this gas company [Burisma]? Was there a connection between the whistleblower, Biden, Biden’s effort to call Ukraine?”
Graham also vowed that Schiff would be called to testify before the Senate, saying, “One of the witnesses will be Adam Schiff because if he, in fact, did meet with the whistleblower, and coached the guy up, I think that’s relevant to the impeachment inquiry itself.”
Schiff denied having personal contact with the whistleblower and denied knowing the whistleblower’s identity, in the first public hearing on Wednesday.
“I do not know the identity of the whistleblower and I’m determined to make sure the identity is protected,” Schiff said but he was not under oath.